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Pets allowed
No
Elevation Gain
?
Trail type
There-and-back
Distance
5.70 mi (9.17 km)
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In the Colorado Rockies, there are many peaks that are not named and are just referred to by their elevation because they are not very prominently differentiated from their neighbors. Sitting adjacent to Mount Ida (12,889 feet), Peak 12,150 offers 90% of the view with half of the effort it takes to summit its big sister. The trail to the top of Mount Ida involves some scrambling and trailblazing, but the route as far as Peak 12,150 is clear and fairly easy.

Starting at beautiful Poudre Lake at Milner Pass on the east edge of the Continental Divide, the trail climbs over the Divide and stays just on the west side of it all the way up. The trees soon thin out, and at about 11,400 feet the trail climbs above the tree line and crosses the alpine tundra the rest of the way up. All along the trail the Never Summer Mountains loom to the west, offering spectacular views of the peaks and the Cache la Poudre River Valley below. Mount Ida and Peak 12,150 are in view much of the time, and the ridge just above the trail to the east is tantalizingly close. Just before the trail crests there is a fork; take the left side until it reaches its highest point and scramble up the hundred yards or so to the rocky peak and vast views to the east.

More ambitious climbers may want to tackle Mount Ida, which is another mile and about 800 feet of climbing, but be aware of the weather. This trail is very exposed and it will take a few hours to descend from Ida, so this shouldn’t be attempted unless it is still well before noon due to frequent and sudden afternoon thunderstorms.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Summer

Congestion

Low

Parking Pass

National Park Pass

Pros

Magnificent views. Not crowded. Fairly easy peak.

Cons

Very exposed. Can be very windy.

Trailhead Elevation

10,689.00 ft (3,258.01 m)

Net Elevation Gain

1,436.00 ft (437.69 m)

Features

Backcountry camping
Big Game Watching
Wildlife
Big vistas
Wildflowers
Big Game Watching

Location

Field Guide + Map

Nearby Lodging + Camping

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